top of page

Unlocking the Potential: How to Master Macros in Your Nutrition Plan

Updated: Apr 16


Picture of food
Macros Made Simple

Imagine this: You're about to significantly change your nutrition. Soon, you'll come across the word 'macros' – mentioned everywhere – in health articles, forums, and social media platforms. So, what are macros all about?


The term 'macro' – for macronutrients – indicates that these are the primary nutrients we need. It's more than just a trending term. It's a crucial part of the food our bodies need.


Why? Because macronutrients are our fuel, fortress, and formula for growth, repair, and peak performance.


Carbohydrates, fats, and proteins are the main components of macronutrients. Each has its role, its importance, and its energy contribution.


Take the banana (my favorite fruit!), for example. It's made up of 93% carbs and has a bit of fat and protein. The primary nutrient it provides is carbohydrates. How about the avocado? With 79% fat and a small amount of carbs and protein, it's mainly a source of healthy fats.


As you embark on this journey of nutritional understanding, get to know these essential nutrients. Learn about them, embrace their benefits, and see the positive changes in your well-being.


Dive into this quick-start guide, which breaks down the macro universe in easily digestible nibbles.


 

Picture of high protein foods
Macros: It's all about protein.

Macros: Protein 101


Protein is an essential macronutrient that differs from the others due to a nitrogen and amino group. Dietary protein is made up of different combinations of 20 amino acids. Here're some important things to know:


— Protein contains 4 kCals per gram.


— It's not all created equal and must contain the nine essential amino acids to be deemed a 'complete protein.'

  • Examples of complete proteins often come from animal sources and these include: chicken, fish, beef, eggs, pork, and dairy.

  • Examples of complete proteins from vegetable sources include quinoa, chia seed, tempeh, seitan, buckwheat, and soy


— It provides amino acids for the building of muscle tissue.


— Protein forms the body's enzymes, chemical messengers, and structural components.


— It should be consumed at 0.8 to 1 grams per lb. of healthy weight (or ideal weight if overweight/obese) each day.


— Protein is safe and has not been shown to have adverse health effects in healthy populations.


When looking at weight loss, protein needs to be prioritized to make sure that you lose fat and not muscle. Protein is a major building block for muscle - it takes more energy to burn protein than it does fat, and it is essential for metabolism!


A picture of foods that are high in carbohydrate
Macros: Carbohydrates


Macros: Carbohydrates 101


"Carbs" are the body's primary energy source, comprised of simple sugars like glucose, fructose, and galactose. While not technically essential – we can get energy from fats and proteins – carbs efficiently fuel our muscles, which is vital info for those considering a ketogenic diet. Achieving the same exercise intensity as usual, without carbs, is challenging.


— Carbs provide 4 kCals per gram.


— The glycemic index measures their impact on blood sugar.


— Simple carbs, mono or disaccharides, are absorbed quickly for immediate energy or fat storage.


— Complex carbs consist of several sugars, often in branched structures. These, found in grains and starchy vegetables, need conversion into simple sugars for absorption. Complex carbohydrates can also provide us with fiber. Think of eating the rainbow here!

  • Great sources of complex carbohydrates: quinoa, beans, barley, brown rice, carrots, green vegetables, apples, raisins are a few.


Typically, 40-60% of our calorie intake should come from carbs. For athletes, depending on their activity level, this translates to 3-12 grams per kg of body weight.



A picture of high fat foods
Macros: Fat


Macros: Fats 101


Fats, comprised of three fatty acids linked to glycerol, are a potent but less efficient energy source than carbs. They're categorized as Saturated, Monounsaturated, Polyunsaturated, and Trans.


— Fats yield around 9 kCals per gram.


— Fats are essential for building cell membranes, producing hormones, and absorbing vital vitamins (A, D, E & K).


— Saturated fats, with carbon atoms fully saturated with hydrogen,

are solid at room temperature, found in chocolate, baked goods, and coconut.


— Trans fats, artificially hydrogenated, were banned from food products by the FDA in 2015 due to health risks.


— Unsaturated fats encompass omega-3, -6, and -9 fatty acids, benefiting cognitive function, heart health, and muscle activity.


— Recommended fat intake is 20-30% of daily calories, with saturated fats constituting no more than 30% of that portion.


The ANCHOR method

 A graphic of the ANCHOR method
ANCHOR to nutrition

If you're feeling overwhelmed with macros or where to start with your nutrition, look no further. I'm the starting point for your journey into life through fueling your body with better nutrition. Using the method outlined above, I guide you through a nutrition journey that is catered to YOUR needs. Nutrition is multi-faceted and not just about the macros and calories, but about the WHOLE mind-body connection. I would love to take you on that journey. Contact me today to find out how to get started!




Commentaires


bottom of page